The Cancer Institute is renowned for sophisticated, rapid treatment of cervical cancer. Our treatment plans use:
- Advanced technology: Our specialists use minimally invasive techniques, like robotic surgery, which mean a quicker recovery time.
- Clinical trials: Our team evaluates your case every month to determine if there are new clinical trials that may be appropriate for you. We are able to make rapid recommendations for the best and latest treatment options, designed for you.
- Care for the whole person: We understand that cancer involves emotional healing, too. That’s why we have a Navigation Team to help you coordinate logistics and to answer all of your questions. Our oncology social worker provides emotional support to patients and families. An After Hours Oncology Clinic offers medical support, from 3 to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday, when your doctor office is closed. And our support services help you keep living the best quality of life during treatment. Cancer doesn’t take time off, and neither do we.
Often, we can treat cervical cancer using chemotherapy, robotic therapy, or radiation therapy. Our goal is to treat the cancer in the most minimally invasive, effective way possible.
Treatment options for cervical cancer include:
- Chemotherapy: These medicines directly kill cancer cells, much like antibiotics kill bacteria. Because the medicines also damage normal cells, side effects can occur, such as hair loss, nausea, or lowered blood counts. Fortunately, the body’s normal cells are more resilient and recover much better than cancer cells, so the side effects are usually temporary. We monitor you carefully and calculate your dose of chemotherapy to maximize effectiveness and minimize side effects. Our oncology social workers and a Navigation Team are available to answer questions and provide support.
- Robotic surgery: Sometimes, we may need to perform a hysterectomy, which is a surgical removal of the uterus. We use a sophisticated robotic surgical system that allows the surgeon to make delicate incisions and access hard-to-reach-places. Robotic surgeries generally result in less pain and a shorter recovery compared to traditional surgery.
- Radiation therapy: Our radiation oncology specialists are specifically trained in gynecology, so they’re adept at treating cervical cancer powerfully and efficiently. Our radiation oncology program is the only one in western Pennsylvania that offers treatment centers accredited by both the American Society for Radiation Oncology and American College of Radiology. These accreditations mean that the Cancer Institute’s facilities meet specific guidelines for patient safety, quality control, and efficiency of equipment.
- Clinical trials: Our oncology team meets monthly to discuss the latest clinical trials to determine if there are new clinical trials that may be appropriate for you. We are able to make rapid recommendations for the best and latest treatment options, designed for you.
Certain treatments for cervical cancer can affect your fertility and damage your eggs. If you wish to preserve your fertility, your oncology team, as well as AHN’s high-risk pregnancy doctors and fertility treatment specialists, can discuss these options with you:
- Surgical removal of the cervix: This hysterectomy alternative, called a radical trachelectomy, helps women with early-stage cervical cancer keep their uterus.
- Egg banking: This procedure involves harvesting and freezing (cryopreservation) unfertilized eggs for later use in conception.
- Embryo banking: We freeze fertilized embryos for later use in conception.
Learn more about fertility treatments at AHN.
Call the AHN Cancer Help Line anytime at (412) NURSE-4-U (412) 687-7348 to schedule a cancer-related appointment or to just talk with our nurses about diagnoses, treatments, and side effects.